June has arrived! While currently touring projects in Zambia we have not forgotten to update you about this month’s feature images.
Our first image captures some boys in a village at the Katyola Settlement near Nyangombe. The smile says it all. The photograph was taken in May 2018 and we just returned to Katyola last week to check in with our widows and orphans.
Our image from our 2019 Animals calendar features a wild dog. Lounging after a recent kill and feeding, the remnants of the meal can be seen around the animal’s neck. Unpredictable and hunting in packs, wild dogs are becoming more and more visible in the South Luangwa Park.
Getting back to Zambia and spending time with our project partners is always a welcome opportunity. The current trip started in Nyangombe after a quick stopover in Lusaka. Despite unbelievable road conditions, the bumpy 5.5 hour trip was well worth the effort as time at this mission station never disappoints.
The first day in Nyangombe Project HOPE Executive Director Christopher Graves visited the Carpentry Shop where apprentices had just received the latest shipment of tools from Canada via container and were eager to show off their skills. From expert joints to good technique with the hand planers, the students have been busy making wardrobes, chairs and tables for area houses at the mission. It is incredible to see their ability to produce such professional results with just hand tools!
Featured in the picture are some of the students with new safety glasses donated by Ken Murray who also arranges significant donations of tools from his carpentry union in Hamilton, Ontario.
On a rainy Spring Saturday just on the outskirts of Aylmer, Ontario, friends and family showed up for the latest day of Wacky Wendell’s hospitality. The wood fired griddle in the sugar shack was cranking out stacks of pancakes and sausages while guests poured copious amounts of sweet home made maple syrup over the fluffy fare.
This Spring local trees provided the sap that was boiled down into the new line of maple syrup and guests readily devoured the food and deposited donations for Project HOPE: Liberia in return. The pancake event follows last year’s beehive of activity as honey was on tap for the last get together on Rogers Road.
Through the very kind efforts of Wendell and Cindy Graves, the annual pancake day raised $1,250 for the project that continues to see the construction of the Maple Leaf Academic Centre and the support of orphans from the ebola crisis. Under the leadership of Fred Varnie, the project continues to flourish. Part of the proceeds also helped a crisis for Fred’s family as a much needed injection was secured to bring the medical care required.
Pictured, in his signature overalls is Wendell Graves, head of maple syrup production. Manning the hot griddle most of the day, Wendell kept the pancakes and sausages flying off the fire and onto many waiting plates satisfying everyone who attended. Stay tuned for more exciting updates from Rogers Road and a rumour that artisan bread and pizzas will soon be added to the maple syrup and honey offerings!
If you missed out on the pancakes, this year’s store of maple syrup is also gone already too. You can participate though by making a contribution to Project HOPE: Liberia via our website and bring hope to a vulnerable child.
It is incredible that we have arrived in May! Later this month the next tour of our projects will begin with stops in Nyangombe, Lusaka and Chipata. The trip will afford visits with our project partners Charles Kafweta, Gordon and Sybil MacKillop as well as Geoff and Martha Muvumbo. We are also looking forward to spending some time at the Quarry School with Violet Simalonda.
This month’s calendar image is two sisters, orphans, who live in a village near the Nyangombe settlement. Supported by donations to Project HOPE, the girls are able to attend school and have basic resources provided. Their beautiful smiles mask the reality of their circumstances, no family, little comfort and day to day challenges to survive. But, the care and compassion of the community care teams at Nyangombe and the financial support of Project HOPE, means they have a future filled with hope.
Please think creatively about how you can help us care for more vulnerable orphans in this part of the world. Your financial gift can make all the difference in the life of a child!
Families of elephant are readily seen in the South Luangwa National Park. With many predators also constantly lurking, looking for their next meal, the protection of infant elephants keeps the adults busy. This month’s image features one carefree baby elephant enjoying a playful afternoon. What the photograph does not show is the ring of mature elephants keeping a close eye on this little one. An opportunistic lion or pack of hyena would have their hands full if they tried to take the baby.
Such images are beautiful and amazing. Seeing these majestic creatures in their natural habitat while struggling to forage for food and protect themselves is a reminder of the daily struggle of our vulnerable widows and orphans. The delicate balance between life and death is a reality each day.